April 14, 2011 Issue


Patton feels Vaughns deserve an answer

Dear Editor:

Alright guys, enough is enough! If you are not going to do anything to the Gough Road just tell the Vaughns. Is it the cost of the work? Not enough people to do the work? Just tell them yes or no...they deserve to know if you cannot approve the expense or for whatever is the reason they cannot get a straight answer. By the way, when you figure the road situation out, how about working on a raise for the county employees that have not had a raise in four years.



Thank you,

Lena P.Patton

Clements feels a Gough Road project could make or break county budget

Dear Editor:

While the majority of Jefferson County residents are praying for enough funds to pay for groceries, gasoline and rent/house payments our neighbors on Gough Rd.are continually ripping our county officials because their road has not been paved. Apparently the fact that our county, state and country and most of the planet are all faced with one of, if not the, worst financial crises in history has not yet made it to the owners of the ministry/Kackleberry Farms.

They obviously are liberals who feel that they are owed a free ride by the taxpayers of this county who can’t afford a trip to/through their “ministry.” As noted in previous editions of this paper, most of the other residents on this road do not want the road paved so why should they be forced to help pay for something they don’t want so that the ministry can thrive even more?

It would require the better part of $1,000,000 to pave the approx. two miles of Gough Road from Middleground Road to the ministry. That $1,000,000 would be required if most of the work is done by county forces and county owned equipment. This will include clearing and grubbing, drainage structures, grading, grassing, basing, paving and signing, all with county forces and equipment. This would not include shoulders of any significance, frontslopes, ditches, backslopes, etc. because additional rights of way would be required for those features. Another huge expense will be relocation of utilities and those utilities will require additional rights of way or easements and that will be one huge problem because most of the property owners that I have talked with said “over my dead body.”

If county officials decide to condemn any parcel it would very likely result in recall efforts. When checking out the above numbers on costs be sure to include the salaries, plus benefits, wear and maintenance of the equipment plus taking away these forces and equipment from other county-maintained roads, etc.

The people who pay taxes and are stuck on portions of the approximately 500 miles of unpaved roads in this county need to have their roads scraped occasionally so the school buses can safely, and in a timely manner, pick up and deliver our children to school and back. It is a matter of record that the county left heavy equipment on the Gough Rd. site last year, to provide the utmost in maintaining an unpaved road to the ministry thereby causing other much worse unpaved roads to go lacking in needed maintenance.

I travel this road frequently and have no problems meeting other vehicles, including large farm machinery which pretty much refutes those of the ministry that report certain vehicles cannot meet on this road. There may be portions well beyond the ministry in, and approaching, Burke County that are not a desirable width but the portion from Woodlawn Church to the ministry is wide enough to place three or four vehicles abreast in many places.

One thing we all need to be looking at is that this particular road project will make or break our upcoming budget. If the road is paved (Even the section from Black Jack Road to Verdery Road) will guarantee that the millage rate for our county will increase.

If this project moves forward to be done by county-only that means there is not enough existing rights of way to provide a safe road meeting the minimum safety design standards so in the event of a lawsuit the county (read taxpayers) would be liable.

I have noticed that an illegal, ministry/Kackleberry Farms, sign has been erected on the rights of way at the intersection of Middleground Road at Gough Road which prevents traffic leaving Gough Road onto Middleground Road from having a clear sight distance for north bound traffic traveling Middleground Road. That sounds a lot like our federal government who also is vying for the very last pennies we have. If you want higher county taxes and major liabilty you should support the paving of the road to the ministry.

Robert L. Clements


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